Hamilton expecting Parabolica qualifying "nightmare"
Lewis Hamilton expects traffic into the Parabolica during qualifying for the Italian Grand Prix to be a "nightmare".
Although Hamilton topped second practice on Friday ahead of Mercedes team-mate Valtteri Bottas, the session was notable for the extreme levels of traffic both during drivers' warm-up laps and qualifying simulation runs.
A year ago, qualifying turned into a farce, with only McLaren's Carlos Sainz setting a second timed lap as the nine drivers involved - Alfa Romeo's Kimi Raikkonen had crashed out - battled for position and crossed the line after the chequered flag had fallen on the session.
"It was difficult in the past," said Hamilton. "We didn't even get to do the last lap [in Q3] last year, so I think it's going to be interesting.
"I've heard they might bring in a minimum time that we have to do for an out lap so that will help, but still I think it's going to be a nightmare in the last corner with everyone trying to get a gap. It's definitely going to be hard work."
In FP2, Hamilton reversed the positions from the morning session when Bottas was fastest by 0.245secs, with his lap of one minute 20.192s usurping the Finn by 0.262s.
Assessing the day, Hamilton added: "It felt like we made some improvement from P1 to P2. In P1 it didn't feel great but then, with it all low downforce here, obviously, so a lot of sliding around.
"But then in P2, we made some steps in the right direction. It's going to be close between a bunch of people I think."
With the fastest non-Mercedes driver being Lando Norris in third, Bottas conceded to surprise at the 0.897s gap from Hamilton to the McLaren.
"Actually the performance and the lap time compared to others is slightly surprising at this point, so we will see tomorrow," said the Finn.
"There is always more to come. My lap in practice two wasn't that great, so there is quite a bit more to come."
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